So, I'm not keeping the Galago Pro September 2, 2013
I wrote the following post this morning.
Then I took my Galago with a working keyboard to the park to get some work done. I found a nice tree, pulled out my WiFi hotspot, and the Galago wouldn't connect to it. For 20 seconds, I'd have a connection and then, boom, I'd get a screen asking for the WiFi password again.
So, I went home and did a test. I hooked my Mac up to the hotspot and it worked. I hooked another laptop running Ubuntu 13.04 up to the hotspot and it worked. The only machine that is spotty with the hotspot is the Galago.
So, System76 has just lost a customer for a long time. I can understand them rushing out a new box with great specs, only to find that it's got some weaknesses (crappy keyboard, poor drivers for the trackpad). But come on. I paid extra money for the "improved" wireless setup and it doesn't work. The System76 folks will have to do a lot to convince me that they're not worse than the generic white-box vendors like XoticPC.
Got the new keyboard installed
I woke up to a question about the Galago Pro. Turns out that I was trying to replace the Galago Pro's keyboard wrong.
So, I did some research and found this article with pictures of the machine open.
I had an ah-hah moment and figured out how to remove the keyboard without taking the entire machine apart. Unscrew the center screw, remove the plastic bit that covers the top of the keyboard (the piece with the power button on it), and then unscrew the keyboard.
I replaced the keyboard. The revised keyboard is not great, but it works. I just have to hit the keys hard.
The trackpad issue is still there, but if I use "taps" rather than "clicks" and make sure there's only one finger on the trackpad, then the cursor is more or less okay.
So, why keep a machine that's not great? Well, it's risen to the "good enough" level. I'm willing to wait for Ubuntu.next to address some of the issues.
So, unlike this guy I'm going to keep the machine.
Should you buy one?
Probably not. The machine is marginal. It's good at what I need: a blazing fast machine that compiles Scala code quickly and has 16GB of RAM.
But you're probably not me, so 8GB might suffice and there's a spate of Dell Haswell machines coming out in a few weeks... and Dell supports Linux... probably better than System76.